Republican State Legislature Passes Nearly Complete Abortion Ban

Republican State Legislature Passes Nearly Complete Abortion Ban

A state legislature has delivered a sweeping victory to one of America’s most conservative governors today.

The Republican-dominated Legislature passed HB 4327. The bill bans almost all abortions starting at fertilization. Exceptions include cases of rape, incest or to save the mother’s life. The bill now heads to Republican Gov. ’s desk, where all indications are he will sign it.

Oklahoma lawmakers have clarified that the morning-after pill and other birth control methods, such as IUDs, will remain legal. They added that in vitro fertilization hasn’t been outlawed either.

Like Texas’ “heartbeat bill,” the bill incentivizes citizens to report providers and anyone else who “aids and abets” an illegal abortion.

As U.S. News & World Report reports:

Two weeks ago, just after the leaked Supreme Court draft opinion shook the nation, Stitt signed another Texas-style abortion ban into place, banning the procedure after six weeks of pregnancy. That ban also followed a near-total abortion ban Stitt signed into law last month, posing a felony charge for providers who perform abortions, which is slated to take effect this summer. The state additionally has a trigger ban that would eliminate access to the procedure if Roe v. Wade is overturned, as well as a pre-Roe abortion ban on the books that would likewise limit the procedure.

“We want to make all abortions illegal in the state of Oklahoma,” Stitt said at a bill signing event in April. “This needs to be a state issue.”

Proponents of abortion access have warned for months that Oklahoma is becoming the next battleground over the issue. As Texas’ northern neighbor, Oklahoma has, since the Texas abortion ban took effect, been inundated with patients seeking abortions out of state. According to a recent study from the University of Texas at Austin, Oklahoma has provided around 45% of all abortions for Texas patients who have traveled out of state to evade the new restrictions. Stitt said last month that he hopes legislation will “curb” that trend.

If Gov. Stitt signs the bill, it will go into effect immediately. Observers expect abortion providers to file a challenge in state court should the governor sign it.

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